Wouldn’t It Be Nice

I bought a new phone last night – a Droid Bionic. I do see the irony in getting a phone called ‘Bionic’ when many a person with diabetes calls themselves bionic with the amount of technology connected to their body at a given moment. After a day I cam safely say this was a wise upgrade. Naturally any phone that is part of the current generation will seem like a leap into the future compared to my previous phone but this thing is legit. More formal impressions of the Bionic will come in a week or so but I have something else to discuss in these sentences.

Consider the nature of the cell phone market. Technology is constantly evolving. Companies are competing for the latest and greatest goods and services (devices and data plans) with the goal of securing a long-term customer. You know, two year contracts and all that jazz.

Switching to a new device or a new carrier, while incurring the wrath of the early termination fee is not impossible. We are free to evaluate options and make changes to our services without much hassle. Considering how fast these phones are technologically outdated it’s a wonder we aren’t encouraged to buy a new phone every 6 months. Of course I do know a few people who behave like that anyway.

I bring this up because while there are a few similarities, the durable medical goods industry would do well to pick up a few more characteristics of the cell phone industry.

I understand the difficult role the FDA has in this equation. We’re talking about a device that is responsible for delivering life-saving medicine every minute. You can’t just announce a new insulin pump every 9 months and expect it to hit the market immediately. Aside from the FDA there’s also the insurance industry to stiffle upgrades. I get it. I really do. The FDA can’t rubber stamp a new device every day and the insurance industry is…well it is what it is. But the same set of market conditions that are pushing the cell phone industry forward are the same set of conditions missing from the insulin pump industry.

Wouldn’t it be nice if insulin pump manufacturers were competing for our business on the scale of Verizon and Sprint? Wouldn’t it be nice if choices weren’t limited to what our insurance allowed based on illogical calculations, misunderstandings and the position of Saturn? Wouldn’t it be nice if there were an efficient and responsible approval process that fostered innovation?

I’m preaching to the choir and probably typing pure bollocks (blame Ricky Gervais for that one) but I can’t help but think about things like this as my Verizon Sales Associate fumbled through the setup process on my new phone.

Honestly, how hard is it to install a SIM Card?

2 thoughts on “Wouldn’t It Be Nice

  1. I’ll be getting a Droid shortly, and indeed, I find a phone called Bionic very diabetically appealing. I heard the battery life is crap though, so I’ll be interested to hear what your experience is…

    I know that’s tangential to the point of the post, but diabetes technology seems to consistently be one thing I just have no strong feeling about either way. I always seem to not care about the stuff that others are up in arms about. So many battles when it comes to diabetes, so I reckon I don’t pick that one.

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    • The fact that I’m talking about innovation in insulin pump design while I’m using insulin pens is not lost on me. I wouldn’t say that I’m necessarily up in arms about this one but it felt like a thought worth capturing.

      As far as the Bionic goes, I’m loving it so far. On low-to-average use my phone lasted about 10 hours and that was in a 4G network so my battery was working harder than normal. At the end of the day battery life isn’t the most important feature for me because I’m rarely away from an outlet or some kind of power source for 8-hour stints. I’ll let you know what I think if the phone once I’ve had a little more time with it but if you’re looking to stay (or join) Android and the Google cloud AND you don’t need a physical keyboard – this should be on your shortlist of phones to get.

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